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Carriage of goods

Carriage of goods

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Carriage of goods

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  1. Carriage of goods Lectures by: Reseacher Dr.iur. Ellen Eftestøl-Wilhelmsson

  2. Where and when • Monday 17. September 10:15 -12:00, Auditorium 6 Domus Academica (Urbygningen) • Tuesday 18. September 10:15 -12:00, Auditorium 6 Domus Academica (Urbygningen) • Wednesday 19. September 10:15 -12:00, Auditorium 6 Domus Academica (Urbygningen) • Thursday 20. September 10:15 -12:00, Auditorium 6 Domus Academica (Urbygningen)

  3. The Structure of the Lectures; • Monday • Introduction; what is carriage of goods all about? • The parties and the documents • Historical and international background • Scope of Application, section • Tuesday • The liability of the Carrier • The exemption from liability

  4. The Structure, cont. • Wednesday • Deck cargo and dangerous cargo • Liability for delay • The amount of compensation and limitation of liability • Thursday • The bill of lading • The sea waybill

  5. Contracts of affreightment • At sea: a contract to perform transportation services by ship or to make a ship´s transportation capacity available • Liner trade, general cargo carriage • Carriage of goods from one port to another. Often contracts with several cargo owners • The contracts: Bill of lading or sea way bill • Maritime Code section IV ”Contracts of carriage”, Chapter 13 • Voyage charters, quantity contracts and time charters • A ship is contracted out on a voyage or time charter. The charterer takes care of the commercial management. • The contracts: Voyage or time charterpary • Maritime Code section IV ”Contracts of carriage”, Chapter 14 • Freedom of Contract, but NOTE § 322,2.

  6. The parties in the contract of carriage • The parties: • Contracts of Affreightment: • Carrier (Norw: Transportør) • Sender (Norw: Sender) • Voyage and time chartering • Carrier (Norw: Bortfrakter) • Charterer (Norw: Befrakter) • Others: • Shipper • The underlying sale • The Norwegian Sales Act §§ 7(2) and 8 • INCOTERMS

  7. The parties and others • The shipper; not part of the contract • The code establishes a quasi-contractual relationship • Has certain liabilities in relation to the carrier • May claim Bill of Lading, § 294 • Responsible for the accuracy of the statements relating to the goods entered in the bill of lading, § 301 • The receiver, not party to the contract • Not mentioned in § 251 • Might step into the contract depending of the wording of the Bill of Lading (§ 292) • The sub contractor (performing carrier) • Is liable for the transport (§286) • contracting carrier is still liable (vicarious liability)

  8. The freight documents • Issued as evidence of the contract of carriage, § 251. • Bill of lading (negotiable) • Sea way bill (not negotiable) • The bill of lading, § 292 • Acknowledgement that goods of a certain nature and quantity have been received (receipt) • A promise to transport the goods • A document of title (only the person in possession of the bill of lading can obtain delivery)

  9. The Bill of Lading • Signed by the carrier • Evidence of transport agreement between the line and the cargo owner • Booking note • Delivered without any formal preliminary contact • Different: • ”Shipped” bill of lading • ”Received for shipment” bill of lading • ”Through” bill of lading • Combined documents/multimodal transport

  10. Sea waybill (§§ 308–309) • Evidence that the carrier has received the goods • Evidence of a contract carrige by sea • Promise to deliver the goods at their destination • Not negotiable!

  11. Historical and international background • Freedom of Contract misused • Exclusion clauses and limitation of liability • USA Harter Act 1893 • Haag Rules (Brussels 1924) • Haag-Visby Rules (1968) • Hamburg Rules (1978 - 1992) ---------------------------------------------- • UNCITRAL; Draft convention on the carriage of goods [wholly or partly] by sea

  12. Scandinavian solutions • Hamburg Rules are not ratified • Thus; the rules in the MC are aligned with the Hamburg rules as far as possible • Separat rules on domestic transport • The Hague-Visby Rules apply only to international transport • Norwegians wanted to harmonise the legal framework for different modes of national transportation

  13. The scope of application • Regulated in MC § 310: • The jurisdiction of Norwegian courts when the contract is providing carriage between two states • Competent when the parties have agreed on Norway (after dispute) • Competent when the case has necessary connection to Norway – described in § 310, para 1,a-d

  14. The choice of law • In the case of cargo damages, special choice of law rules; MC § 252 and 253 • Carriage with a Scandinavian point of contact will be subject to Scandinavian rules on liability applied as lex fori • Carriage without a Scandinavian contact – the law of another convention state most closely connected with the carriage. • What kind of carriage? • § 252; Chapter 13 applies to ”carriage of general cargo” • § 253; But not to ”carriage under a charter party” • The dividing line? • depends upon the transportation document • however, a line will be drawn • Chapter 13 applies to tramp bill of lading • and to quantity contracts

  15. The Choice of Law • Chapter 13 applies to Nordic international trade (§252,1) • Chapter 12 applies to other international trade in 5 situations (§ 252,2) • Agreed port of loading in a convention state • Agreed port of discharge in a Nordic country • Several ports of loading agreed, actual port one of them and Nordic • Transport document issued in Convention State • Transport document contains Paramount clause

  16. Choice of Law, cont. • § 252 third paragraph • Outside of Nordic trade: • Freedom of choosing the law of a Convention State, • The relationship with 252 second para nr 5 • According to preparatory work the parties have a freedom of choice • After a dispute has arisen, the parties may agree on how to settle it (§ 310 para 2)

  17. To what extent are the Norwegian rules mandatory? • The rules are mandatory, but the carrier can take on more stringent liability (§ 254) • Exceptions; § 254,4 • Rt 2004.517 • Rt 2001.676 • This includes the time-bar rules (§ 501)

  18. Liability for damage, loss or delay Contract of affrightment Sender Carrier Damaged, lost, delayed goods Sales Contract Receiver SjSJø MC § 274 flg

  19. The main rule on liability; MC § 275 • MC § 275: Negligence with a reversed burden of proof • MC § 276: Exemptions • 1) Fault or negclect in the navigation of the ship or • 2) Fire MC § 276, second paragraph: not if ”initial unseaworthiness”

  20. Liability for loss, damaged or delayed goods: § 275 • The cargo owner must prove; • That the goods have been damaged while in the carrier´s custody • That he has suffered economic loss • The carrier must prove himself innocent • That the damage is not a result of his own or any of his servants or representatives fault or negligence • In practical terms: • How the damage actually occurred • That neither he nor his servants were negligent • Borgarting lagmannsrett 2002.3075 NOTE! A burden of proof assumes the availability of evidence.

  21. What must the carrier or his servants do to avoid being branded as negligent? • Breach of public regulations? • Container Code 1982/84 • Has the carrier enough knowledge? • Not perfect – but reasonable fitness • The cargo owner must give the carrier necessary information • Not only the particular goods but also the type of voyage • Previous experience • ND 1977.1 Tor Marcia • Gulating Lagmannsrett 2004.97970 (frossen akkar)

  22. The periode of care, MC 274 • while the goods are in his or her custody instead of ”tackle to tackle” • At the port of loading (2. para) • From the carrier receives the goods • At the port of discharge (3. para) until the goods are : • Delivered to the receiver • Warehoused on the account of the receiver (§ 271 or agreement) • Delivered to any authority according to law

  23. Vicarious liability • Identification or privity • The neglect of servants is considered the fault of the carrier. • Vicarious liability is only presupposed in the code § 276, para 1 no. 1 • Establishes pre-conditions for indentification • Includes more than those directly employed by the carrier • Harbour workers and longshoremen? Yes • Shipyard employees and inspectors ? ?? • Combined causes, § 275, 3

  24. Exemption from liability, MC § 276WHO´s fault or neglect? • Haag/Visby – Hamburg • Excemptions a & b kept, but not for Norwegian domestic trade. • ” Fault or neglect in the navigation or management of the ship” • Who´s fault or neglect is exempted? • Only fault/neglect comitted by master, crew etc. • Not his own fault, or the fault of senior management personnel (owner´s privity) • What if the shipowner and the master are the same person? • ND 1974.315 • Statement in preparatory work

  25. Exemption for navigational errors. What is included? • Navigation of the vessel • Steering and manoeuvring, response to signals etc. • Management of the ship • The ship´s condition, manning and equipment • Borderline cases • Was the act or omission primarily in the interest of the cargo or the ship? • ND 1975.85 NSC Sunny Lady

  26. Exemption for fire § 276, Para 1 no.2 • What fires are included in the exemption? • Fires caused by persons for whom the carrier is responsible • fires caused by negligent smoking by the crew (not liable) • Not fires caused by owner own fault, or the fault of senior management personnel (owner´s privity) • Fires due to inadequate fire procedures (liable) • What is a fire? • Open flame • Smouldering? Possible

  27. Unseaworhtiness and the exemptions in § 276 first para no. (1) and no. (2) • The exemptions do not apply when the damage, loss or delay is connected with unseaworthiness. • The ship being unseaworthy at the commencement of the voyage • The carrier, or someone for whom he is responsible, has not exercised due diligence to make the ship seaworthy

  28. Seaworthiness • What is seaworthiness? • Narrow sense; technical • Must be able to perform the voyage without endagering human life • Broad sense; in relation to the cargo/ cargoworthyness • The cargo can be expected to reach its destination undamaged. • The rule in MC § 276 second paragraph is only applicable to initial unseaworthiness • Gorgonzola & chocolate

  29. Deck cargo and live animals • Deck cargo, MC § 263 • Must be in accordance with a particular right • Loss or damage; ordinary rules on liability • Unlawful loading on deck • Special rules on liability in § 284, strict liability • Loading on deck despite otherwise agreed: • unit limitation rules (§§ 280-283) can not be invoked § 284, second paragraph • Live animals • Liable under the ordinary rules (§275) • Not liable for special risks associated with such carriage § 277 • (Nordiske Dommer 2000.393 smolt=live animals)

  30. Dangerous cargo • Cargo, inherently dangerous • Definition is difficult • More than everyday risk • Lists of dangerous cargoes issued by the authorities • Regulation of 29 July 2006 on carriage of dangerous cargoes

  31. Duty of disclosure • The sender has a duty of disclosure; § 257 • The sender will be liable if the shipper failes to mark the goods and inform the carrier • The goods must be marked as dangerous • Reasonable notice must be given to the carrier • All relevant information must be given (second paragraph)

  32. The carrier´s rights • The carrier´s rights when the sender has not fulfilled his duty to inform (§ 291): • May refuse to take dangerous goods on board • May discharge the goods or destroy them or render them innocuous (harmless) • Not applicable when ”assumption of risk”; § 291 second paragraph • Special rule on saving life and property – no obligation to pay damages; § 291 third paragraph

  33. Strict liability on the sender • § 291 imposes strict liability on the sender • When the cargo is delivered • without information about dangerous characteristics or • Without information about necessary safety measures • Pre-condition: The carrier must not have had actual knowledge • § 291 covers both (and only) carrier and sub-carrier

  34. Liability for delay • The loss: • The goods are damaged or destroyed • Liability is regulated in § 275 • The goods are ok, but market conditions have changed (Christmas decoration in January) • Liability is regulated in § 278 • When is there a delay? • Starting point: § 262 ”carried out with due despatch” (care) • § 278.2 gives further guidelines: • Agreed delivery • Within the time which is reasonable to demand of a prudent carrier in the circumstances • No delivery? 60 days – total loss

  35. Deviation • Traditionally; serious breach of contract • Today; • has the carrier chosen a reasonable voyage plan, and • is the cargo at destination within a reasonable time • § 275, second paragraph: the carrier has a right to take measures to save human life or reasonable measures to save ships or other property at sea.

  36. The scope of liability • The ordinary starting point (economic loss) does not apply • Standarised loss rule in MC § 279 • Value of the goods • Exchange price, market price or current value of same goods • Ex LF-2006-25784 What about indirect or consequential damages? has been accepted in arbitration practice, but no general rule

  37. The unit limitation rules • SDR – Special Drawing Rights, § 505 • MC § 280 first paragraph: • 667 SDR for each lost or damaged unit or • 2 SDR per kilogram damaged or lost goods • Ex ND-2004-373 • What is a unit ? § 281; container, pallet or other transport device The text of the bill of lading is determinative • The limit of liability which results in the highest liability shall be applied • NOTE!!The rules on liabiliy does not apply where the carrier himself caused damage wilfully or through gross negligence, § 283 • Global limitation in MC Chapter 9, § 175 no 3 • Norwegian domestic trade; 17 SDR § 280 second section

  38. Notice and period of limitation • Notice of damage or loss § 288, 1. para • When the cargo is delivered • Imediately and written(§ 288, 1.para, 1. sentence) • Or, if not apparent, three days after delivery (§ 288, 1.para 2.sentence) • Notice of loss in consequence of delay • 60 days § 288, 3. para • Period of limitation § 501 nr 7

  39. Introduction - the bill of lading • The functions of the bill of lading • Liability under the rules relating to bills of lading • Delivery liability (distinct type of liability, §§ 302, 292) • Description liability (§ 300) • Misdescription (§299 third paragraph)

  40. The underlying sale and the bill of lading • Distance sale • The goods and the payment cannot be exchanged simultaneously • The buyer cannot inspect the goods • The bill of lading provides a description of the goods • The value of the description hinges to a large extent on the legal rules associated with it.

  41. How to obtain delivery of cargo • The receiver must be authorised §§ 292, 1.paragraph no. 2, 303 and 304 • Who is authorised ? • The reciver must physically possess the bill of lading, and • Be expressly stated in the bill of lading/consignee (§ 302 1. ledd, first paragraph, first alternative) or • A series of endorsements are leading to the person demanding delivery ( § 302 1. paragraph, second alternative) or • There is an endorsement in blank /without naming the consignee (§ 302 1. paragraph, third alternative) • The carrier must act bona fides; if he knows that the receiver is not authorised to demand delivery he cannot deliver the goods

  42. The bill of lading is a negotiable instrument • The bill of lading is a key to receiving the goods: • The issuers defences cannot be invoked against holders in good faith, MC § 292 third paragraph • The carrier will be free from liability if he delivers to the owner (§ 302) • The carrier can demand presentation as a pre-condition of delivery (§ 304) • A holder in good faith is protected against competing claimants (§ 306)

  43. The content of a bill of lading What is a bill of lading? MC § 292 requires that the document contains: - evidence of an agreement of carriage by sea - evidence that the sender has received or loaded the cargo” - the words ”bill of lading” or make it apparent that delivery will only take place on presentation of the bill

  44. The content of a bill of lading, cont. § 296 first paragraph no. 1 -the nature of the goods - their dangerous properties - the necessary identification marks - the number of packages or pieces and - the weight All as stated by the shipper § 296 first paragraph no 2 - the apparent condition of the goods and packaging (in apparent good order and condition) § 296 first paragraph no 3 - 13

  45. § 296 second and third paragraph • Shipped billl of lading must contain: • Nationality and name of the ship • Place of loading and the date when the loading was completed • The bill of lading must be signed • By the carrier or someone on his behalf • The master, § 176; ”principal” (owner)/ § 295; ”carrier” • By someone who has been given the authority • An agent

  46. What if some information is missing? • MC § 297; still a bill of lading if the conditions in § 292 is fulfilled • Must be named bill of lading or • Indicate that the goods only will be delivered against presentation of the document

  47. Carrier`s duty to check that the information in the bill of lading is correct • § 298 first paragraph • The carrier shall to a reasonable extent check the accuracy of the information on the goods entered in a bill of lading • § 298 second paragraph; make a reservation • Resonable grounds for doubting or • Not had resonable opportunity to check • § 299 third paragraph; notation • Must state expressly that the information is incorrect

  48. The carrier`s liability for information in the bill of lading • Designed to protect individuals who rely in good faith on the information in the bill of lading • How far should the protection extend? • Is it enough that there is a gap between the information and the actual conditions of the goods? • Or do we need some culpable conduct causing the information to be misleading? • How should the damages be assessed in monetary terms? • Expectation interest (put in the situation as if the goods matched the description) • Reliance interest ( put in the situation as if he had been actually informed) • Solution: §§ 299 and 300 - different liability regimes

  49. Implied transport liability, § 299, third paragraph • Only relevant when a third party has acquired the bill of lading in good faith relying on the accuracy of the statement in it • Then evidence on the contrary shall not be admissIble

  50. Implied transport liability, cont. • The third party must have paid the purchase price in exchange for the document • Or it is used as a negotiable document in international trade • A bank has acquired the bill of lading in connection with it letter of credits obligation • Or otherwise has extended credit using the bill of lading as security • The bill of lading is conclusive evidence of the condition and quantity of the goods at the commencement of carrige • Any difference between the description in the bill of lading and the conditions of the goods at delivery is treated as damage arising during transport